The significance of music varies for different individuals. To me, music is a companion, a time traveller, and a comforter.
As a companion, music accompanies me and keeps boredom at bay when I am about to embark on a long bus/train ride. I can vividly recall the times when I forgot to bring my earpiece out with me and in that moment, everything simply freezes and an existential crisis ensues. What is the meaning of life when I can’t listen to music on the go!
As a time traveller, certain music brings back particular memories from a specific period of time in my life. For example, when I was on holiday in Japan, I listened to a particular song on repeat. Now, whenever I listen to this particular song, I would recall my trip to Japan and the emotions that I felt back then. It is a joy and risk to listen to music, as you will never know when a long-forgotten pleasant or unpleasant memory will surface again.
As a comforter, music is the one that I turn to when I simply need some alone time to recollect my overwhelming thoughts. As music is non-judgemental, it provides a safe haven for me, allowing me to release my emotions freely. Besides being there for me during my darkest times, music is also there with me during my happiest moments, rejoicing with me as I soak in that joyful moment.
Through this series of photographs, I will be introducing my favourite composer/singer-songwriter – Furukawa Honpo. He is a Japanese indie musician whom I have been following for over 6 years. The music that he produced can be described as mellow and unconventional. The stories narrated through his songs contain a surreal and dream-like quality to them. The main reason why Furukawa Honpo’s songs are so significant to me is because his songs had brought me through the toughest time in my life till date, which was during secondary school. When I was stressed out by the unachievable expectations set by my school back then, his songs would calm me down, giving me the strength to press on. These are the reasons why I fell in love with his works and look forward to every song that he had released.
Sadly in 2015, Furukawa Honpo announced that he would put his career as a musician to an end. As a result, he would be releasing his last live album titled ‘.CALLC.‘. Needless to say, I was devastated. My greatest desire back then was to get my hands on this last live album. However, as Furukawa Honpo is an indie musician, his album was only available in Japan for a limited period of time. I could not even find it online! I was fortunate enough to have a friend who was travelling to Japan during that particular period of time and she graciously agreed to keep a lookout for it. Even then, I did not dare to get my hopes up for fear of being disappointed. As you can already tell from the photographs above, my friend managed to find it! Till today, I cannot believe that I actually got a copy of this album!
Enough of the background story, let’s get on with the photography series shall we? This series reflects the different states of emotions that I went through when I first received ‘.CALLC.‘.
‘Exhilaration‘ is indeed the perfect word to sum up all that I was feeling in the first photo of the series. Donned in my secondary school class shirt and PE shorts, this photo captured the classic jumping for joy moment. The blurriness was intentional to indicate movement caused by excitement. The bright lighting also contribute to the joyful mood expressed in this photo.
The second photo of this series is titled ‘Eagerness‘. Like its title already suggests, once I received the CD album, I wanted to listen to it immediately because I could not wait any longer. Treating the CD like a precious object, I carefully placed it into the CD walkman that my mom graciously lent me. I personally feel that listening to the songs from the CD itself is a vastly different experience from simply listening to it from iTunes. The dark yet warm lighting of the photo sets the peaceful and still mood, where I can immerse myself in the songs without any distractions.
Last but not least is ‘Bliss‘. Once again, Furukawa Honpo transported me into a magical world through his songs, allowing me relax and escape from my responsibilities for just a little while. There is a Chinese saying that goes ‘休息是为了走更长远的路’, which translates to ‘A rest is a preparatory step for a longer journey ahead.’. Furukawa Honpo’s songs re-energises me as I prepare to resume my every day work.